- I will finally graduate from my Masters Program
I'm done! Degree will be firmly in hand in July. Convocation is taking place next week but I will not be there. I decided not to attend my convocation for a number of reasons. Firstly, I wouldn't be graduating with anyone I actually knew from my program. With my maternity leave of absence, I ended up being behind my original cohort and ahead of my cohort that I finished off with. It would also mean taking the day off work ($$) and DH taking the morning off ($$$). Paying for parking ($)...and paying for a gown rental ($). The gown rental just did it for me. Also, I never really felt at home at the campus like I did with my undergrad. In the end, I won't be sorry I missed the ceremony, just glad to have the degree.
- I will find secure and meaningful employment
With my contract being in place until the fall, I am taking the opportunity to peruse job advertisements once/week. But also, I have been putting forth more effort at work and making the most of the job I currently have. There seem to be a number of jobs popping up in my field so again, I am optimistic.
- I will continue to pay off debt (at least $15,000) this year while at the same time taking a family vacation in the Summer and buying a newer reliable vehicle
So far this year we've paid off $5860 in the last 5 months. Our goal between now and the end of the year is to pay down another $9140. I am totally confident that this is do-able between DH's overtime in the summer and cutting our living expenses I think we'll have sufficient cash-flow to make this happen.
Back in April I mentioned that that our week-long family vacation likely wouldn't happen with DH's busy time at work etc. We never did get to Great Wolf Lodge but we will be spending a lot more time together as a family this summer since we decided on a whim to buy a trailer up in cottage country (photo above). When I was younger, I always wanted a cottage or a vacation home. DH was lucky enough to have one and has many summer childhood memories from there. We can still visit his family cottage but the drive is 5 1/2 hours which makes it a once/summer trip. Having our very own getaway just over an hour's drive away is perfect. Most of our big decisions have always been quick, gut decisions and somehow they have always been the best decisions we make. We went up for the first time last weekend and despite the not so nice weather, we managed to get out a lot and it was heavenly spending family time without distraction. Ever since we got home, I have been wishing we were back up there. So the vacation portion of our budget definitely increased but I think with all of the positive cost cutting measures we are taking, we'll still end up neutral and on-track with the debt repayment.
Still loving my new Prius :)
- I will make our house a home
Spring renovations were also plentiful. We freshened up the exterior of the house in the front and tiled the kitchen floor. We have a few more small projects around the house which will keep us busy through the summer. I am hoping to get more photos hung on the walls.
- I will make an effort to be healthy
This will be my focus for the next half a year. I wanted to become more physically active.
Over the summer, I plan on eating better and more balanced meals. I am hoping to up my intake of fruits and veggies and take (religiously) calcium/magnesium supplements. I'm so good about getting the boys to eat fruits and vegetables but I tend to give them all the good stuff and eat all the junk myself. Over the past 5 years, I've struggled with my health with extreme allergies, food sensitivities, pregnancies, stress.. you name it. Weight is a non-issue for me. I would actually love to gain 5 lbs by the end of the summer.